Fig. 75.— A case of electric burns. An insane person went to Grant Road (Bombay)
Station siding and climbed the roof of a saloon bogie and touched the upper head
railway electric wires. He remained suspended.
(From a photograph lent kindly by Dr. H. S. Mehta.)
According to the regulations of the Board of Trade currents of more
than 250 volts are not supplied to dwelling houses for the purposes of lights
2. The Resistance of the Body. — The effects of electric shock vary with
the amount of resistance offered to the flow of its current. The human body
is a bad conductor of electricity, though the resistance varies in different
tissues. The skin offers very great resistance and when perfectly dry is
impervious to currents of great strength. Hard and oily skins are also
resistant, but moist, soft and perspiring skins are less resistant. Resistance
diminishes with the continuance of the current. It also diminishes in
kidney diseases, Basedow's disease and hysteria.
Symptoms. — The symptoms produced by the passage of an electric
current are local lesions at the points of entrance and exit of the current,
pallor of the face, suffused eyes, dilated pupils, cold, clammy skin, stertorous
"breathing, and insensibility. Signs of cerebral irritation may sometimes be
present. In severe cases insensibility occurs immediately, followed by a
few gasps and death.
According to Professor Jellinek 12 the lesions produced by the electric
current are not burns, and none of the surrounding structures is altered.
Tney heal without infiltration, suppuration or pyrexia, but when tendons,
joints and large areas are involved, there may be some aseptic necrosis and
it is presuiBably this change which accounts for haemorrhages which some-
complicate recovery. In some cases death may occur later from
destruction of the tissues of a limb or limbs.
Headache, giddiness, temporary loss of memory and speech, deafness
hysterical manifestations may occur after recovery from electric shock.
Nov. 5, 1321, pu
; Hedizinische, KHnifc. Sep. 23. 1927.